UCLA medical students brace for news at residency 'Match Day'

Media Contact

Elaine Schmidt
(310) 794-2272
WHAT: 
Match Day is the fun, frenzied day when medical students nationwide learn which hospital has accepted them for residency — advanced training in their chosen specialty. At UCLA, the ceremony climaxes in a mad scramble for the envelopes, with 150 aspiring doctors tearing them open with their families and friends. Many videotape themselves and let distant loved ones listen in on cell phones during this emotional rollercoaster of an event.  
 
WHEN: 
Thursday, March 17  
 
8 a.m.
Students and families arrive for check-in and breakfast. 
 
8:30 a.m.
Welcome by Dr. A. Eugene Washington, UCLA vice chancellor for health sciences and dean of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, and Dr. Neil Parker, senior associate dean of student affairs at the Geffen School of Medicine. 
 
9 a.m.
Students at UCLA — and at medical schools across the country — open their envelopes.
 
 
WHERE: 
Covel Commons, Grand Ballroom (third floor), 330 De Neve Dr., on the UCLA campus (map
 
STORY OPPORTUNITIES:
The following students, and others, are available for interviews:   
 
Karlos Oregel, 29 (Culver City)
As big brother to three deaf siblings in a Mexican American family in inner-city Santa Ana, Karlos grew up advocating for the outsider. He's chosen a career in primary care to bridge the cultural gaps between the Spanish-speaking and hearing-impaired communities. He credits his immigrant parents with helping him achieve his dream. While Karlos attended college at UC Riverside, his mother cleaned houses and his father picked fruit at nearby farms. He is pursuing his medical education through UCR/UCLA's joint program. 
 
Jose Aguilar Jr., 25 (Indio)
Aguilar was drawn to medicine as a teenager when his cousin was born with Down syndrome. His research into his cousin's care sparked a lifelong interest in psychiatry. As an openly gay man who is also Mexican American, he envisions himself working with lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Latino teens or with minority children with developmental disorders. His partner, Luis, will join him at Match Day.
 
Evan White, 26 (Sacramento)
Evan's mother was diagnosed with colon cancer his senior year in college. Her fight to survive inspired him to pursue a career in radiation oncology. Before entering medical school, he worked in biotechnology, where he became an inventor on two patents and developed an antibody he dubbed eBioEvan. Evan wants to provide compassionate care to cancer patients like his mom while pursuing research to improve their quality of life. His mom is now celebrating her fifth year of remission and is thrilled to see her son become a doctor.  
 
Kristin Sharar, 29 (Woodland Hills)
Sharar devoted three years to basic research in vaccine immunology before entering medical school. She is choosing an obstetrics–gynecology residency in order to apply her scientific expertise to benefit clinical patients. Eager to pursue international medicine, she takes the first step this month by flying to rural Brazil to treat impoverished patients with infectious diseases as one of the first students in the UCLA Global Health Education Program.
 
Ricardo Salas, 35 (Fresno)
Salas is the son of Mexican migrant laborers who still work in the fields of the San Joaquin Valley. After earning his master's in public health, he worked with uninsured cancer patients at the American Cancer Society for three years before launching his medical education in the UCLA/Drew University program. Ricardo has worked closely with the homeless and with migrant day laborers like his parents. He plans to enter internal medicine and specialize in hematology–oncology. 
 
Christopher Sarkiss, 25 (Northridge)
Sarkiss was drawn to a career in medicine when his 2-year-old cousin triumphed over his battle with leukemia. Born to an Armenian father and an Assyrian mother, he was the first in his family to graduate from college and will become its first doctor. He is pursuing a neurosurgery residency and hopes to also complete a fellowship in pediatrics. 
 
 
MEDIA CONTACT:   
Elaine Schmidt, UCLA Health Sciences Media Relations
310-794-2272 (office) | 310-597-5767 (cell) | [email protected]    
 
PARKING:   
Due to campus construction, parking for oversized media trucks is extremely limited. Please R.S.V.P. to media contact by 3 p.m. on Wednesday, March 16, to be assigned a spot for oversized vehicles and to reserve complimentary parking for passenger vehicles.
Media Contact:
Elaine Schmidt
(310) 794-2272
[email protected]